|“||Learn this lesson well. Warfare is not so simple that you can rely on just momentum alone.||”|
Strategists are specialists in using tactics to manipulate the battlefield. Normally, strategists fight with their heads, rather than with weapons. Strategists can be officially ranked as high as a Great General to as mundane as a Commander.
Strategists are able to use the natural formations of any given battlefield to their advantage with the intent of minimizing causalities and using the least necessary manpower to slay their foes efficiently. Strategists are able to open gaps in enemy defenses through the use of clever manipulation, and finish the enemy off with single, decisive, surprise attacks. As Mou Ten mentioned about Ka Ryo Ten, good strategists are able to conduct battles on a regional scale.
Only 2 generals have been known to use the Ryuudou tactic: Go Hou Mei and Ri Boku, with the only one who has been able to accomplish it without viewing it being the latter. The only known general who has been able to counter the Ryuudou tactic is Duke Hyou, first retreating against Go Hou Mei when he used it, then solving the tactic with his personal guards of 25 or so men against Ri Boku in Bu Pass.
The Rindou is an odd tactic that even Great General Mou Gou had only heard of through rumors. The only known user of it is Rin Ko of Ren Pa's 4 heavenly kings, to slay General Ei Bi of the Mou Gou Army. It works by having 2 groups of cavalry run in circles for a long time, to goad the enemy into reinforcing the sides of their formation, when the true target is the center, or wherever the enemy commander lies. Rin Ko has been able to break through the famous Ou Ki's defensive formations and even cut him with this tactic.
Assault Echelon Formation is an advanced form of Echelon formation, that was first used by Ri Haku, a well-known defensive general, against Mou Bu in the Battle of Bayou. In the battle against the Coalition Army, Shou Hei Kun told Mou Bu to use this tactic when Kan Mei, commander-in-chief of the Chu Army finally came out. It involves using a diagonal formation to hit the opposing army, thus transmitting a shock wave throughout the entire line. Soldiers hit will move back 3 steps, then the next 2 steps, and so on. Enemies hit by both waves will be pushed 4 steps back. Though only a few steps, even a small disruption can cause whole armies to rout, and that is when your army charges in to eradicate the enemy. However, This tactic is difficult to perform by even the most skilled strategists, so this tactic is considered too impractical for use.
The Snake is a tactical formation used to envelop charging enemies so they are trapped on all sides. It relies on the movement of the troops simultaneously to ensnare or surround their opponent as they make contact with the army using the formation. It is most likely named for its versatility on the battlefield in terms of the troop movements when using the move. The only known user of this formation in the series is Ri Haku.
Key tips for Aspiring StrategistsEdit
According to Mou Ki, studying at strategist academies is the fastest path towards becoming a strategist.
One will always find their "aptitude" as a strategist tested on the first battle. There the strategist learns whether or not the he possesses the "aptitude" to become a real strategist. Without that, the aspiring strategies will never be able to function as one matter how much talent they hold.
Students who are still tabletop tacticians do not truly know the horror of warfare. It is unclear whether or not they will be able to function even while enemies with killing intent march towards them, and so many aspiring strategists are slain because they are paralyzed in their first battle, unable to give orders and defeated.